Spark talks with teens in programs at the Destiny Arts Center. The center, which offers a range of classes including martial arts, modern dance, theater and leadership training, has been building self-esteem and confidence in youth since 1988. By using movement to express emotion and incorporating performance into a violence prevention program, the center encourages self-awareness while simultaneously aiding in conflict resolution.
Destiny, which stands for “de-escalation skills training inspiring nonviolence in youth” provides a supportive, positive environment for Oakland-area children and teens. Its arts education program includes classes culminating in recitals by the participants, and many of its programs, such as Dance for Social Change, unite the arts and social issues. The center also hosts a multicultural youth performance company, which creates performance art pieces that critique contemporary society.